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Amazon Studios Orders Neil Gaiman’s ‘Anansi Boys’ Series Adaptation

Based on the prolific author’s 2005 book of the same name, the limited series, about a young boy who discovers his recently deceased father was the trickster god of stories, begins shooting in Scotland later this year.

Amazon Studios has ordered the original, limited, six-episode series, Anansi Boys, based off Neil Gaiman’s 2005 novel of the same name. Shooting will begin later this year in Scotland at studios originally built to attract the famed Lord of The Rings productions.

Anansi Boys follows Charlie Nancy, a young man who is used to being embarrassed by his estranged father. But when his father, “‘Mr. Nancy” dies, Charlie discovers that his dad was Anansi: trickster god of stories. And he learns that he has a brother. Now his brother, Spider, is entering Charlie’s life, determined to make it more interesting but a lot more dangerous.

Gaiman, Sir Lenny Henry, Douglas Mackinnon, Hanelle M. Culpepper, Hilary Bevan Jones (Endor Productions) and Richard Fee (Red Production Company) will executive produce. Gaiman and Henry will also write for the series along with Arvind Ethan David, Kara Smith, and Racheal Ofori. Gaiman and Mackinnon will serve as co-showrunners. Culpepper (Star Trek: Picard, Memories of Ptolemy Grey) will direct the pilot. Jermain Julien (Grantchester) and Azhur Saleem (Doctor Who) are also directing for the series. Paul Frift will produce. 

Though not a sequel or spin-off of Gaiman's previous novel and Starz series, American Gods, Anansi Boys does feature the character of Mr. Nancy, who appears in both books. According to Gaiman, “Anansi Boys began around 1996, from a conversation I had with Lenny Henry about writing a story that was diverse and part of the culture that we both loved.  I wrote a novel, an (I hope) joyous and funny book about a dead god and his two sons, about birds and ghosts and beasts and cops, based in Caribbean and African tales.  It was my first number one NYT Bestseller, and went on to become a beloved and award-winning book.” 

He continued, “I am thrilled that Sir Lenny Henry is one of our executive producers. He was there when it was conceived, he narrated the audiobook, and he has kept the heart of the production true.” 

“I’ve been a huge fan (and couch sleeping friend) of Neil Gaiman’s for over 30 years and I have loved being a part of the Anansi Boys creative team,” said Henry. “I love that we’re going to have a suitably diverse cast and crew to tell this joyous story! What’s great is that the whole production is listening and ensuring that inclusion is happening and is being seen to be done.”

“No one can weave a story of fantasy, humor, and deep emotion quite like Neil Gaiman, and ‘Anansi Boys’ is a funny, weird, wonderful ride,” said Vernon Sanders, co-head of television for Amazon Studios. “We’re so happy to have Neil, Lenny, and Douglas bring their vision for Anansi Boys to the screen for our Prime Video customers around the world.”

The show is produced by Amazon Studios, The Blank Corporation, Endor Productions and Red Production Company. No release date has been set.

Source: Amazon Studios

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